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Geronimo Canyon, AZ

Guide 7 Triplogs  1 Active Topic
  3.4 of 5 
no permit
1 Active
148 7 0
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Difficulty 2 of 5
Route Finding 2 of 5
Distance Round Trip 1.35 miles
Trailhead Elevation 1,760 feet
Elevation Gain 374 feet
Accumulated Gain 384 feet
Avg Time Round Trip 1 - 3 hours
Kokopelli Seeds 3.27
Interest Off-Trail Hiking
Backpack Possible - Not Popular
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10  2018-03-16 te_wa
20  2012-03-19 sirena
44  2011-12-23 Vaporman
14  2011-12-23 suzaz
34  2007-12-16 kanode
14  2004-03-08 joebartels
12  2002-03-02 joebartels
Author joebartels
author avatar Guides 241
Routes 829
Photos 12,070
Trips 4,849 map ( 24,809 miles )
Age 51 Male Gender
Location Phoenix, AZ
Historical Weather
Trailhead Forecast
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Preferred   Jan, Feb, Dec, Mar → 10 AM
Seasons   Autumn to Spring
Sun  5:16am - 7:39pm
Official Route
0 Alternative

Warning the 2019 Woodbury Fire & 2020 Sawtooth Fire damaged a majority of the Superstition Wilderness.
Spicy Blackened Oasis
by joebartels

A ravine shoots south from the Tortilla Flat sign, just west of the tourist strip. From SR88 this mini etched canyon in the landscape goes up to Geronimo Head. Here we explore the lower ravine.

There's parking room for one, maybe two cars on the north shoulder of SR88. Don't do it or you'll likely get a $75 ticket. Instead hike over from the auxiliary lot southeast of Tortilla Flat. Immediately head into the ravine going south of the highway. No maintained trails exist on this adventure. There is a good use trail on the eastern bank. Not knowing this I forged up the ravine. Medium to small sized boulders are easily negotiated. Bushwhacking must appeal to those that apply. Boots and jeans are your only option for survival in this desert jungle.

After a short fifteen minutes of scrambling you are rewarded with a nice view of a tall dryfall. A few more paces bring you to a small cave on your right. The cave is small and nothing exciting. A bum with a keen alcoholic fetish appeared to be occupying the space. Tidy though, broom and all.

Back down in the ravine just up creek from the cave sits a beauty. A swimming hole appears to be probable. It's actually too small for swimming so let's not get excited. With bone-dry conditions I could only imagine water shooting down the waterslide.

Another fifteen minutes or so up the ravine is the real gem. The ravine turns into a mini boxed in slot. It's a short lived journey into the abyss. A sketchy finger grip dangle is necessary to reach the upper deck. It's debatable whether the view back down is worth the risk. If the creek were roaring you'd be washed down in a flash.

It's unlikely you'll ever want to take on this mini adventure. Back in January I viewed this intriguing area from above. Curiosity got the best of me. As mentioned earlier there is a use trail fairly high above the eastern bank. It's a bushwhack with many pricklies along the way. If you wish to explore further on up the ravine... the "right" side of the boxed in slot is your ticket. I didn't go further as this seemed to be the last hurrah from my photos looking down on the area.

Note: for details on the canyoneering version see Headdress Canyon

Check out the Official Route and Triplogs.

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2002-03-02 joebartels
    WARNING! Hiking and outdoor related sports can be dangerous. Be responsible and prepare for the trip. Study the area you are entering and plan accordingly. Dress for the current and unexpected weather changes. Take plenty of water. Never go alone. Make an itinerary with your plan(s), route(s), destination(s) and expected return time. Give your itinerary to trusted family and/or friends.

    Permit $$

    Map Drive
    Paved - Car Okay

    To Tortilla Flat Trailhead
    From Idaho Road & SR-88 follow SR-88 east 17.0 miles to Tortilla Flat. Continue just past the buildings and before the bridge-less flood ravine. On the south side of the road near the museum follow a road that rises up. This takes you up to an overflow parking lot where hikers are allowed to park. If you are parking overnight fill out a free permit as stated on the sign.

    Parking elsewhere has been reported by members as a $75 ticket from the Forest Service.

    From PHX (I-10 & AZ-51) 52.0 mi - about 1 hour 10 mins
    From TUC (Jct 1-10 & Grant) 145 mi - about 2 hours 27 mins
    From FLG (Jct I-17 & I-40) 196 mi - about 3 hours 14 mins
    90+° 8am - 6pm kills
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